Dealing with arbitration regimes in One Belt, One Road countries

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China will follow the principles of wide consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits in its One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative and also promote connectivity in terms of national development strategies and relevant institutions with the countries along the route. Improving the international arbitration system, one of the most flexible and efficient dispute settlement methods, will play a big part in these integration efforts.

Difference across the region

Deepening the mutual legal co-operation in spite of the different arbitration regimes in different countries. The OBOR initiative covers more than 70 countries. Cultures and religions, and economic and social development, are all different in these multinational areas. As for law, different countries also have different dispute settlement systems.

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Take the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC), a political and economic alliance made up of six Persian Gulf states – respectively Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar and Bahrain – as an example. Although unified arbitration rules have been enacted in the GCC states, the practice or usage of international arbitration is lower than expectations because these countries conduct too much strict substantive and procedural reviews on arbitration awards.

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Yao Qi is an associate professor at Beijing Foreign Studies University (BFSU) Law School, and executive director of the university’s Research Centre on Chinese Enterprises Going Global